Jane is sixteen when she first becomes aware of Leonard Campbell. He is a tall, gentle man with full lips and no ring on his left hand. He is her teacher. As Leonard begins to show her attention, giving her novels to read and discuss over dinner, their attraction grows and they fall in love. It is only once married, tied down with two children in 1980s suburbia, that Jane realises she might have settled too early, losing much of herself in the process.
Then Marion and Andrew, a couple whose passion frequently tips into violence, move in next door, forcing Jane to confront feelings she didn’t know she could have. And when Marion abandons her family, Jane steps in to help with the couple’s two boys, setting in motion a series of events, all of which expose the push and pull within every relationship. As desire and loyalty are blurred, it becomes clear that nobody can escape the devastating impact of a family falling apart.
The Necessary Marriage explores the tension between intimacy and desire for freedom. It is an intense, intimate portrait of how couples come together and grow apart, and the passions that drive us to do crazy things.